More than 300,000 children in Baltimore lack access to the nutritious foods necessary for a healthy, active life. Childhood food insecurity is a serious problem not just in Baltimore, but across the country, and it can have a long-term impact on health and well-being.
For many Baltimore kids, the challenges are not limited to food insecurity. A lack of resources and education is compounded by poverty and homelessness.
To help address these challenges in the Brooklyn Park neighborhood of Baltimore, UnitedHealthcare and the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation recently completed the first leg of the 2019 Team8 Tour at Benjamin Franklin High School. More than 70 employees participated in the two-day event through UnitedHealthcare’s “Do Good. Live Well.” volunteer initiative.
Now in its fourth year, the Team8 Tour is a national campaign aimed at building healthy communities, made possible by a $500,000 grant from UnitedHealthcare.
The two-day event in Baltimore focused on increasing access to healthy food, renovating school facilities and creating opportunities for students to stay active in athletics and afterschool programs.
UnitedHealthcare volunteers installed flooring, assembled new fitness equipment, conducted cleanup of the school’s weight room, and painted and assembled new shelving and desks for the coaches’ office and the school staff lounge.
The volunteers also cleaned and updated the on-site food pantry, stocking donations of fresh produce and nonperishable foods provided by the Maryland Food Bank and UnitedHealthcare employees. They wrapped up the day by preparing a healthy meal for students with guidance from a Maryland Food Bank nutritional expert.
For more information on the Team8 Tour, visit www.dogoodlivewell.org/team8tour.